Do you have some candles in your house that are more an olfactory part of the décor rather than an item that is used as intended? I certainly used to.
I love candles. Well I love natural, soy candles I should say. Scented ones preferably.
I think it’s my Scottish stinginess – I don’t burn them straight away because I like to get my money’s worth from them! But every time I do light them, I get such good vibes and know that I’ll benefit from doing it more often.
So I thought I’d look into why this is.
AKA The benefits of burning a candle*. In no particular order:
1 – Candles help you create an atmosphere, an ambience. They can change a space, and how you feel in it. You’ve probably seen romantic movies (and maybe done it yourself!) - when someone is trying to woo their partner they have the room lit by candlelight. Why not woo yourself?! Lighting a candle works well to set the intention to take some time to focus on yourself. Perhaps with a meditation or, of course, a relaxing bath.
2- The power of scent. So you’ve set an intention to take some time to yourself. How else might the candle help? If it’s a scented candle, the aromas can help work their magic. Just one whiff of a gingerbread/clove candle and I get that excitement I felt as a child, hanging my stocking by the fire on Christmas Eve! Citrusy smells are uplifting; vanilla and woody smells can be calming.
3 – Speaking of calming, isn’t there something quite hypnotic about the flame of a candle? Perhaps it transports us back to a time in human history (or even just last summer’s family camping trip) when we weren’t bombarded with work emails, social media and 24/7 news alerts, and we’d sit round the fire, at peace, with the important people in our life.
A few candles flickering around the room can make it feel cosy and welcoming. In Denmark, the land of Hygge, where they use the most candles per capita, candles are known as levende lys – living light.
4 – If you light your candle in the evening, as well as dimming your house lights, this can be beneficial because you’ve limited the blue light your eyes are receiving. Exposure to lots of blue light in the evening can disrupt your body clock, leading to issues like poor sleep and digestion. So a candle-lit bath (leaving your phone out of the bathroom!) ticks a few sleep-enhancing boxes.
5 – The ritual. Would you think about lighting a candle every evening? Or on certain evenings when, say, you know you have a busy or stressful schedule the next day? Such a ritual can have a very positive effect on mental health. Your own personal commitment to your well-being and relaxation. Especially effective if done at a similar time each evening, as part of a pre-bedtime routine - letting your body and mind know it’s time to relax and fall asleep soon.
6 – The power of scent, part 2. Did you ever smell a certain scent and were transported back in time, or to another place? Scent, emotion and memory seem to be strongly linked. There is a certain vanilla/lime/coconut smell that I catch a whiff of now and again. I never know what I’m actually smelling, but I am immediately taken back to a camp site in the South of France when I was 10, playing at the pool. What I was smelling at the time was a combination of the coconut suntan lotion on the glistening long limbs of the French mamas on their loungers by the pool, and the lime flavoured ice blocks that helped us stay cool. When I smell that mystery scent, all my worries fade away and I feel young, happy and stress-free again!
7 – Celebration! I’ve not had candles on my birthday cake for a long time. That many candles could be a potential safety risk! But candles are definitely associated with celebration. Enjoy a small moment of self-celebration when you light your candle. Or share some celebration by gifting a candle to someone you love, so you can spread lovely positive vibes to them too. And remind them of the benefits of actually lighting and using the candle, not just letting it gather dust!
Because we think a bath by candlelight is one of the loveliest ways to treat yourself, we stock natural soy candles for you. They’re handcrafted by Pene of Lys Creations. Her goal is to create candles that bring light, love, peace, and happiness into your life. We chose her travel tin candles for 2 reasons:
No glass, so less damage if they get knocked over in your bathroom.
When you’re traveling, there is something very comforting about taking your evening ritual with you. It’s light and easy to pop a bath soak pouch and a travel tin candle into your luggage.
* These are the benefits of burning a natural, soy-based candle. It’s best to make sure you use such a candle as they are environmentally friendly and made from a renewable resource. Whereas paraffin wax candles are made from petroleum and release a lot more soot and toxins into the air.